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Startup bus conversion manufacturer Legacy Coach will get local government financial support if it reaches certain benchmarks, according to The Register-Guard of Eugene, Ore.
Legacy will get $150,000 in Oregon state lottery revenue through a local economic development agency if it creates at least 50 jobs and raises $5 from other sources for each $1 it receives from the local development entity, the newspaper reports.
Legacy was founded by bus conversion industry veteran Tom Nestell who told the Register-Guard that the company is “well funded” from around 30 investors, 25 of whom are from the Eugene/Springfield, Ore. metro area.
The company is operating from a 16,000-square-foot plant in Coburg, Ore., a suburb of Eugene, where it currently employs 30 people. Nestell told the Register-Guard he intends for Legacy to employ about 60 people a year from now and about 160 people about two years from now.
Nestell was not immediately available for comment today (May 10).
Nestell does not consider Legacy a start-up because he founded Marathon Coach Inc., another bus converter in Coburg, in 1979 and he ran Marathon until he sold it in 1994. Nestell remained at Marathon as an employee until 1996, and after spending a few years in retirement, returned to the bus conversion of operation of County Coach in nearby Junction City, Ore., 18 months ago
Nestell left Country Coach, a unit of Perris, Calif.-based National RV Holdings Inc., last summer.
The most immediate impact from Legacy going into operation will be on the labor market in the Eugene area, National RV spokeswoman Carol Taylor Clay told the Register-Guard. “Finding good, qualified labor is always a challenge — especially with high-end coaches where you really need craftsmanship,” she said. “That probably means we’ll all work harder attracting employees.”
In addition to Country Coach, Monaco Coach Corp., primarily a builder of diesel pusher Class A motorhomes, also has its headquarters production plant in Coburg. However, Royale Coach, Monaco’s bus conversion operation, is in Elkhart, Ind.